Anytime I see a place on the map titled, "Artist Point", I put it on my list of places to visit. It probably indicates a great view.
In all the years that I have lived in Washington State, I have never been to Mount Baker. On top of Mount Baker, at the very end of the highway is Artist Point. As this summer drifted past, I kept thinking that it was time to go. Partly because I wanted to take scenic pictures but mostly to go where I have never gone before.
The wife got tied up with some meetings and other events one week so I decided it was time for a short road trip. So I packed my gear and headed out the door alone. I generally don't mind going places alone. I just turn on the radio, adjust my speed, set the cruise control and let the miles roll away. I often find it nice to be just cruising with no mindless chatter interrupting my thoughts. The wife understands that and I appreciate her all the more.
So on Day 1, I rolled north to Bellingham. I stopped at the Costco for gas and then headed to the Holiday Inn to check in. It's become quite a joke between the wife and I about how we plan our road trips around the locations of Holiday Inns and Costco gas stations.
I checked in at the front desk at 1:30 but the rooms weren't ready. So I asked for a room assignment and would return later. The front desk was very pleasant, gave me my keys, and welcomed me to Bellingham. I then headed back out the door, got into my truck, and headed for Mount Baker.
From the hotel, I got back on to I-5 heading South. I got off at the very next exit for Hwy 542.
Hwy 542 quickly turns into a single lane highway. Traffic is light so I didn't mind it at all. The sun was starting to get lower and the light was changing to golden hues. I quickly passed thru small towns like Deming, Kendall, Maple Falls, Warnick and Glacier.
90 minutes after leaving the hotel I was driving past the Mount Baker ski area. I was just minutes away from Artist Point. I made my first stop.
5 minutes later I was at Artist Point. The sun was barely over the distant mountain but I still had a lot of light. I spotted a hiking trail leading off from the parking lot, grabbed my camera and pack and wandered off.